Rookie Regional Affiliate and NRHA Champions Crowned at Tulsa Reining Classic

Meradas Shining might have only been competing in her first show, but the three-year-old Shiners Sonita mare has likely traveled many more miles than her peers. In January she traveled to the United States from Argentina to be shown by Eduardo Salgado.

Salgado, originally of Brazil, moved to the US less than two years ago following some big wins at his first National Reining Horse Association Futurity. There, with Gunner Boy, he won the Open Levels 1 and 2 and finished Reserve in the Open Level 3.

Now with another foreign-bred equine, Salgado looks poised to make an impact in Oklahoma City come November. “He’s really confident in her. This (Tulsa) is a really nice show to get them ready and was a really good test. It showed him where he needs to work more and less to get her ready,” said Eduardo’s brother, Fernando, who was translating. “She felt the same in the show pen that she does at home, so it makes him feel that whatever he gets at home he’s going to get in the show pen, so he’s really confident.”

Salgado and Meradas Shining topped the 94-horse field with a 221.5 and won more than $22,715. That will help pay for some of the expenses that owner Alberto Casasco has taken on. “Eduardo especially thanks the owner for the opportunity to ride this mare – especially because it is really expensive to bring a horse over from Argentina. Not only that, she was not nominated for the NRHA or NRBC, so they paid her up late and that’s a lot of money. They put a lot of money up thinking it would work so he’s really thankful,” Fernando said. Eduardo also expressed his appreciation to Luiz Desouza, who started Meradas Shining in Argentina.

“He’s very thankful to Luiz for thinking of him. Luiz started the mare and knew she was good. He thought she could be good in the United States and so he told the owner that Eduardo would be the right person to send her to.” Fernando added, “He also thanks his family, especially his wife, who is there every day helping him work.”

Although talented, Eduardo knew the mare was still a little green, so he really worked to show the mare to the best of her ability. “He’s always known that she is a really, really big stopper and that is her best maneuver, but she wasn’t really ready to go hard on her circles and turns. He really tried to be clean and safe there and go as fast as he could to his stops,” Fernando said.

Eduardo now rents stalls from Joe Hayes in Gainesville, Texas. Fernando added, “He has been there for two months – he moved there after the Derby. He gives a really big thank you to Joe for helping him out and everything he has done for him.”

The American Paint Horse Association recently partnered with the Tulsa Reining Classic to award the high-scoring registered paint in the Hollywoodstinseltown Open Futurity. Winning the paint award was Ruben Vandorp and Capones Getaway Ride, owned by Janet Benson.

Franco Bertolani and Late Night Stopper (Jacs Electric Spark x Best Stop) tied for the Co-Championship with Thiago Boechat and Xtra Vintage Step (Wimpys Little Step x All Thats Dun). Each entry marked a 220.5 and won $7,981. Late Night Stopper is owned by Cardinal Hill Training Center, the naming sponsor of the Tulsa Reining Classic Open Derby on Sunday, while Xtra Vintage Step is owned by Xtra Quarter Horses.

Finishing Reserve in the Open Level 3 was Todd Sommers, who piloted Spooky Dreams (Magnum Chic Dream x Spooks Stylin) to a 220. The score netted owner Sally Amabile $3,473, and an additional $5,863 for fourth place in the Open Level 4.

Gabriel Diano and his horse Wimpy Chic (Wimpys Little Step x Chics Fancy Lady) and Jamie Bissell and DP Gunnaoutshinya (Gunnatrashya x Out Shinin Wimpy) finished as the Open Level 2 Co- Reserve Champions with scores of 219. Each took home $1,089. Wimpy Chic is owned by Thales Rocha Bordignon.

Competition concludes Sunday with the Cardinal Reining Horses Open Derby, the Ariat Novice Open Level 4 Derby, and the SmartPak Non Pro Derby. The South Central Regional Affiliate Finals also wraps up with several NRHA classes.

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